On November 24th, 2016, there was a big event at SKKU. It was the election of the student council for the new semester. Following that election, SKKU welcomed the 49th student council, ‘Sungkeum’. As lots of students have voted, and participated in several public hearings, the election took place with a great deal of interest surrounding it. The Sungkyun Times (SKT) assumes that there are still students who have some questions for the new student council. In this article, SKT interviews the Seoul and Suwon student presidents, Won Yoo-Bin, and Oh Hoon-Yeong asking them about their promises, and listens to their ambitions as student presidents.
Q1. What was your motive to run for student president?
Won Yoo-Bin | Hello. My name is Won Yoo-Bin, and I started my undergraduate degree in 2012. Over the past year, I have learned a lot, and grew very affectionate towards the student council while I was student president of the College of Social Sciences. During my term, I dreamed of leading my fellow students through the student council. I decided to run for student president of the Humanities and Social Science Campus to settle the issues that the previous council made, and lead our school by constructing a better student council.
Oh Hoon-Yeong | Hello. My name is Oh Hoon-Yeong, I also started my undergraduate course in 2012. While I was working as president of the College of Science Student Council, there were some activities in which students participated very actively. Those activities also helped to improve student’s school lives. Therefore, I started to dream that all Kingos, not only students from the science college, could benefit from the activities held by the student council.
Q2. There are several promises that you made before you were elected. Do you have a special promise you focus on the most?
Won Yoo-Bin | Now we are especially focusing on preparing a male student lounge. Currently, there are a few lounges for female students on campus, but on the other hand, there are none for male students. I think it is important to prepare a place where all students can rest on campus.
Oh Hoon-Yeong | We are currently doing our best to unify student union fees. Besides the school student union fee, students also have to pay for colleges or department student union fees. A lot of students pay each student council and union fees without knowing the reason why they are paying for each or how their union fees are used. To prevent these situations, we are focusing more on unifying student union fees.
Q3. What are you doing to meet the expectations of your promises?
Won Yoo-Bin | The first thing we should do is to arrange available places. We are even thinking about giving up a certain place which belongs to the student council if we cannot find a suitable place. After we find a place, we should deal with budget issues with the school.
Oh Hoon-Yeong | From now on, we are planning to let a central committee and school know about our schemes, and persuade them to agree with them. After going through several steps of persuasion, the student council is planning to publicize the unification of student union fees on the school transfer meeting which will be held in April. If the plan gets passed through the school transfer meeting, then it will be possible to practice unification of the student fees.
Q4. How are the school council’s activities going after the election?
Won Yoo-Bin | Each campus has worked to compromise the level of school tuition fees. The school and the student council went through the school tuition inquiry commission seven times. Following the seventh school tuition inquiry commission, we have now finished all discussions, and it is settled. I strongly think that now we should pay attention to see whether the school is going to apply the settlement or not. Either way, the student council will continue the process until realization of the settlement on tuition fees.
Oh Hoon-Yeong | Currently, the student council is organizing issues from the inquiry commission, and we are looking forward to the school doing its job. From February, this year, the student council will be focusing on the entrance ceremony which will be held in the final week of February.
Q5. Just like the council name ‘Sungkeum’, is there a special way to communicate with students?
Won Yoo-Bin | The student council, and students, have been interacting through the Facebook page or through Kakao Talk. However, I realized that wasn’t enough. Until now, students were always just asking about simple things, and the student council used to answer them with formal answers. So ‘Sungkeum’ came up with a more personal interactive communication method. It is called the ‘Hamsung’ project which is going to be similar to the election campaign. Some of the members of the student council, including myself and the student vice president, will go out to the campus and interact with students.
Oh Hoon-Yeong | ‘Sungkeum’ on the Natural Science campus is composed of eight groups. The Student council of Natural Science is planning to go offline and survey the students one by one to hear their opinions. Moreover, we are considering putting up a question booth where students can ask any questions that they have for the student council, and the student council will be able to discuss those issues with them, and explain the plans that we have.
Q6. What is the image of an ‘ideal leader’ do you think?
Won Yoo-Bin | In my case I think there are two kinds of leaders. One is someone that helps the members of the student council express what they want to achieve, and another is one that listens to students’ ideas, and then leads them in the same direction. These two kinds of leaders are the ones who I think are needed, and are who I am trying to become.
Oh Hoon-Yeong | I think an ideal leader is someone who can gather various opinions even if the procedures might be complicated. Gathering all opinions into one might take lots of time. However, a good leader must have the ability to stand with all that matters, and try hard to get a result that everyone thinks is reasonable, and appropriate. I also think a good leader must have a certain boldness in order to push his or her plans ahead.
Q7. Lastly, can you tell us your hopes for the student council as a student president?
Won Yoo-Bin | I want to create an atmosphere whereby students can believe that a council is a necessary, and meaningful group for this year. I promise that the student council will work hard to live up to the many expectations of the students, also I hope that students pay more attention to what we are doing. Thank you.
Oh Hoon-Yeong | I want to help create an environment where the school, and the students can grow together. I promise to reflect as many opinions as possible to enhance our students’ participation, and make the school put students before anything else. Thank you for your support.
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